What is Seasonal Affective Disorder?

Usually, the seasonal affected disorder starts on fall and extends until winter. Although the seasonal affective disorder is not considered as an official diagnosis, the number of people experiencing this is ever so increasing. Another is that, it is observed that the farther people live from the equator, the less they are to experience this disorder, which is prevalent on countries that have four seasons. However, this kind of disorder is not just limited to winter. Some people also experience this certain kind of depression on the summer season.

A person who is going through seasonal affective disorder may show some signs of depression. Although these symptoms still vary depending on the person. Some of the symptoms are the following:

  • A feeling of sadness or emptiness
  • Pessimism, hopelessness, and worthlessness
  • Guilt
  • Irritability and restlessness
  • Sudden weight loss or weight gain
  • Inability to sleep or sleeping too much
  • Fatigue and decreased energy
  • Loss of interest in things that one normally enjoys
  • Suicidal thoughts and attempts
  • Difficulty in remembering information, making decisions, and concentrating
  • Decreased sex drive
  • Withdrawal from friends, family, and social activities
  • Isolating ones self and more

Aside from the earlier mentioned symptoms, a person with this disorder will have drastic changes in behavior and immediate relatives, friends, and workmates will notice these changes right away.

Fortunately, there are different kinds of treatments for seasonal affective disorder. The most common is light therapy or phototherapy. The good thing about light therapy is that it is available commercially and could be used for 30 minutes daily although sometimes, light therapy alone is not enough. Happy Lamp has tested and reviewed a lot of these lamps, so if you want to learn more about SAD treatment using light therapy lamps you should visit their website. They have some really good deals on some lamps too.

There are also cases that might require taking of anti-depressants and some treatments. Some of the commonly prescribed antidepressants are Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil, Celexa and more. There are also some stimulants that are recommended for people who are experiencing Seasonal depression disorder like Provigil, Ritalin, and more. Acupuncture could also be considered on some cases, especially for pregnant women who could not take such medical pills. Aside from the medications, another way to treat seasonal affective disorder is by undergoing group therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy. Group therapy also treats other factors that could be associated with the depression. Some of these factors are smoking cessation, sleep education, sexual health, stress management, substance abuse, time management, wintertime activities and more.

There are also simple ways to deal with sad seasonal affective disorder that does not include medication or therapies. These involve adjusting the lifestyle and the mindset of the person depending on the season. The simple ways to solve and lessen the effect of seasonal affective disorder are the following:

  • Eat a healthy diet
  • Go outdoors when the sun is out and have fun
  • Exercise regularly and stay fit
  • Do not drink too much
  • Treat yourself and relax
  • Be optimistic about the season and make the most of it
  • Hang out with friends and family that you could have a good time with

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